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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Suzdal City Council Fires Mayor for 'Inactivity'

The mayor of the historical town of Suzdal was dismissed Tuesday for "inactivity," becoming the second mayor to be fired under a new law that empowers local legislatures to oust mayors.

Suzdal city council members voted 13 to 2 in favor of dismissing Sergei Godunin for refusing to sign off on decisions approved by the council, Vesti-24 television reported. Godunin said he would challenge his dismissal and warned that his departure could "possibly lead to the collapse of the legislature," because no one would be able to sign laws until a new mayor was elected in October or next March.

Council head Mikhail Ivanov said no crisis would break out and the council would operate until the election as it does when the mayor is on vacation.

Godunin is the second mayor to lose his job under the law, which came into force in April. The first was Ozyorsk Mayor Sergei Chernyshov, who was ousted on June 1 in a feud with the city council, residents and Chelyabinsk's governor. On Tuesday, however, an Ozyorsk court backed an appeal by Chernyshov and restored him as mayor.

Under the law, which has been described by some political commentators as a Kremlin attack on one of the last remaining popularly elected executives positions, mayors can be fired for mismanaging finances, neglecting their duties for more than three months or losing the respect of council members.